Wednesday, November 9, 2011

What’s that you say…You don’t want to bulk up?

Have you ever heard that annoying phrase…..” I don’t want to lift weights, because I don’t want to bulk up.”
Sigh. Those poor women have seen too many images of the body builder women….maybe like this one?
I promise….you will NEVER look like that by lifting weights and weights alone. That is not normal. Excessive bulk (the woman in the picture) comes with several injections of who knows what, eating habbits out of this world and probably even more steroids on top of injections.  You LEAN up when you lift weights and of course muscle will begin to show overtime…. Please come talk to me after trying CrossFit or even lifting weights for let’s say…Oh, I’ll even give you some time to try to bulk up….so maybe a year? A year you say! That’s too long? Well if that seems too long then I guarantee you won’t get  any muscle, if you won’t stick with it for that long! Just try it! Please!
This is a portion of an article written by Mark Rippetoe in 2006.  The article is written about how silly it is for women to think they should train differently than men.  In this article he talks about how women throughout time have thought and have been told that they shouldn’t train hard or with heavy weight. Here he (in his comical way) dispells some funny myths about women and some of the ideas women seem to have about training:
  • Your muscles cannot get “longer” without some sort of radical orthopedic surgery.
  • Muscles don’t get leaner- you do.
  • There is no such thing as “firming and toning”.  There is only stronger and weaker.
  • The vast majority of women cannot get large, masculine muscles from barbell training.  If it were that easy, I would have them.
  • Women who do have them have taken some rather drastic steps in that direction that have little to do with their exercise program.
  • Women who claim to be afraid to train hard because they always “bulk up too much” are often already pretty bulky, or “skinny fat” (thin but weak and deconditioned) and have found yet another excuse to continue life sitting on their butts.
  • Only people willing to work to the point of discomfort will actually look like they have been other-than-comfortable most of the time.
  • You can thank the muscle magazines for these persistent misconceptions, along with the natural tendency of most normal humans to seek reasons to avoid hard physical exertion.

Myths of Women’s Weight Training and Female Bodybuilding

Women Bodybuilding Myths

By , Guide
The myths about women’s weight training and female bodybuilding do not ever seem to go away. With this article, I’d like to share the facts regarding weight training and female bodybuilding.Women’s Weight Training Myth #1 -Weight training makes you bulky and masculine.
Due to the fact that women do not, and cannot, naturally produce as much testosterone (one of the main hormones responsible for increasing muscle size) as males do, it is impossible for a woman to gain huge amounts of muscle mass by merely touching some weights. Unfortunately, the image that may come to your mind is that of professional female bodybuilders. Most of these women, unfortunately, use anabolic steroids (synthetic testosterone) along with other drugs in order to achieve that high degree of muscularity. In addition, most also have good genetics coupled with an unbelievable work ethic that enable them to gain muscle quickly when they spend hours in the gym lifting very heavy weights. Believe me when I say that they do not look like that by accident. Women who conduct weight training without the use of steroids get the firm and fit cellulite-free looking body that you see in most fitness/figure shows these days. Women’s Weight Training Myth #2 – Exercise increases your chest size.
Sorry girls. Women’s breasts are composed mostly of fatty tissue. Therefore, it is impossible to increase breast size through weight training. As a matter of fact, if you go below 12 percent body fat, your breast size will decrease. Weight training does increase the size of the back, so this misconception probably comes from confusing an increase in back size with an increase in cup size. The only way to increase your breast size is by gaining fat or getting breast implants.
Women’s Weight Training Myth #3 – Weight training makes you stiff and musclebound.
If you perform all exercises through their full range of motion, flexibility will increase. Exercises like flyes, stiff-legged deadlifts, dumbbell presses, and chin-ups stretch the muscle in the bottom range of the movement. Therefore, by performing these exercises correctly, your stretching capabilities will increase.
Women’s Weight Training Myth #4 – If you stop weight training your muscles turn into fat.
This is like saying that gold can turn into brass. Muscle and fat are two totally different types of tissue. What happens many times is that when people decide to go off their weight training programs they start losing muscle due to inactivity (use it or lose it) and they also usually drop the diet as well. Therefore bad eating habits combined with the fact that their metabolism is lower due to inactivity, and lower degrees of muscle mass, give the impression that the subject’s muscle is being turned into fat while in reality what is happening is that muscle is being lost and fat is being accumulated.
Women’s Weight Training Myth #5 – Weight training turns fat into muscle.
More alchemy. This is the equivalent of saying that you can turn any metal into gold; don’t we wish! The way a body transformation occurs is by gaining muscle through weight training and losing fat through aerobics and diet simultaneously. Again, muscle and fat are very different types of tissue. We cannot turn one into the other.
Women’s Weight Training Myth #6 – As long as you exercise you can eat anything that you want.
How I wish this were true also! However, this could not be further from the truth. Our individual metabolism determines how many calories we burn at rest and while we exercise. If we eat more calories than we burn on a consistent basis, our bodies will accumulate these extra calories as fat regardless of the amount of exercise that we do. This myth may have been created by people with such high metabolic rates (hardgainers)that no matter how much they eat or what they eat, they rarely meet or exceed the amount of calories that they burn in one day unless they put their mind to doing so. Therefore, their weight either remains stable or goes down. If you are confused about nutrition, please read Nutrition Basics.Women’s Weight Training Myth #7 – Women only need to do cardio and if they decide to lift weights, they should be very light.
First of all, if you only did cardio then muscle and fat would be burned for fuel. One needs to do weights in order to get the muscle building machine going and thus prevent any loss of muscle tissue. Women that only concentrate on cardio will have a very hard time achieving the look that they want. As far as the lifting of very light weights, this is just more nonsense. Muscle responds to resistance and if the resistance is too light, then there will be no reason for the body to change. Women Should Train Hard
I have trained with girls that train as hard as I do and they look nothing but feminine. If you want to look great, don’t be afraid to pick up the weights and lift hard!
About The Author
Hugo Rivera,’s Bodybuilding Guide and ISSA Certified Fitness Trainer, is a nationally-known best-selling author of over 8 books on bodybuilding, weight loss and fitness, including “The Body Sculpting Bible for Men”, “The Body Sculpting Bible for Women”, “The Hardgainer’s Bodybuilding Handbook”, and his successful, self published e-book, “Body Re-Engineering”. Hugo is also a national level NPC natural bodybuilding champion. Learn more about Hugo Rivera.

A first timer! Exciting!

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